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'I made a promise to him' | Simsbury mom conducts study to fight substance abuse

Lisa Gray lost her son to an opioid overdose in 2018, less than a month later she started a non-profit to help those battling addiction.

GRANBY, Conn. — A local nonprofit is conducting a study in Connecticut to see what types of programs and services are needed to support those battling substance use disorders.

Lisa Gray lost her son to an opioid overdose in 2018, less than a month later she started a non-profit to help those battling addiction.

Now, with grant money from the Hartford Foundation of Public Giving the organization will be able to help the community at large.

RELATED: Torrington women launch drug overdose prevention campaign

A tragedy and a mother's last words to her son turned into a mission Gray said.

“Losing my first born then 24-year-old Jordan to a heroin and fentanyl overdose inside of our family minivan in the driveway of our home,” said Gray. “I made a promise to him that day as I said goodbye to him in the driveway that I would continue to fight to save other individuals and families from the devastation that is brought on by the disease of addiction.” 

“A Promise for Jordan,” a non-profit with the promise to help others.

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The organization is spearheading a study in the town of Granby about substance abuse disorders help.

“We want to actually talk to the residents and business owners who are living this every day so we have set up some focus groups and we are inviting the community to join us and share their experiences with us and let us and let us know how we can help them in this battle with substance abuse disorder and help them maintain recovery,” said Gray. 

The study begins later this month, with groups meeting both in person and virtually.

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The organization said they also can arrange private meetings.

“We want to put together those plans to try to meet those needs and hopefully makes those differences in the town of Granby for those families and residents who are struggling,” said Gray. 

A promise to the community and to Jordan.

“If I have reached one life if I have helped one family then Jordan didn’t die in vain,” said Gray. 

 “A Promise For Jordan” received $6,000 in grant money to create a plan of action to meet those needs.

 In-person focus groups will be held at Farmington Valley YMCA on Aug. 23, Sept. 1, Sept. 8, and Sept. 15, and virtual focus groups will be offered on Sept. 7 and Sept. 17.

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